NFC Division Leaders All On Winning Streaks Before Week 11
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There are three teams in the league that have outscored their opponents by 100 points or more.
All three are division leaders and all three are riding winning streaks. New England Patriots? No. They’ve scored 62 points more than their opponents. Pittsburgh Steelers? No, just 39.
All three teams also happen to play in the NFC — the Philadelphia Eagles (8-1) have outscored their opponents by 104 points, the Los Angeles Rams (7-2) by 134, and the New Orleans (7-2) by 103. The Eagles and Saints have each won seven in a row, while the Rams have won four.
Add another interesting fact to the mix: All three teams missed the playoffs last year.
The Rams and Eagles put their excellent road records to the test this week as L.A. travels to Minnesota to play the NFC North leaders, who have won five straight, and Philadelphia meets its longtime rivals in Dallas. The Saints, who started the season off 0-2, are at home to Washington.
Carolina, Indianapolis, New York Jets and San Francisco are off this week with a bye.
Here are the picks for Week 11 against the spread (odds provided by bovada.lv).
***Vegas Betting’s Week 10 record against the spread: 4-10
Division Leaders Have Both Won Four Straight
Tennessee at Pittsburgh — Two AFC division leaders meet up in this Thursday night clash. The Steelers (7-2) have won four straight games, including a shaky win on the road against one of the worst teams in the NFL in Indianapolis. The Titans (6-3) have also won four straight. They had to rally to beat Cincinnati last weekend. Pittsburgh is just 5-4 against the spread (ATS), but Tennessee is even worse at 3-5-1.
VGB’s pick — Pittsburgh (-7), Over (44)
Ravens Have Losing Record On Road
Baltimore at Green Bay — The playoffs are slipping away from both of these teams. The Packers (5-4) surprised as an underdog last week in Chicago, but they lost rookie running back Aaron Jones for at least three weeks. The Ravens (4-5) have a losing record on the road and are three games behind the AFC North leaders. It’s normally very tough to win in Green Bay, but that’s when Aaron Rodgers is playing.
VGB’s pick — Green Bay (+2), Over (38)
Bears Struggle To Score Points Every Week
Detroit at Chicago — The Lions (5-4), who have a better record on the road than at home, need this win to keep pace with the division leaders. They have won two straight and meet a division rival here that struggles to put up points. The Bears (3-6) are averaging less than 17 points a game and have lost two straight. If the Bears’ defense doesn’t show up, they lose … plain and simple. Detroit is 4-5 ATS, while Chicago is 6-3.
VGB’s pick — Detroit (-3), Over (41)
Even Winless Teams Can Beat The Giants
Kansas City at New York Giants — How are the Giants (1-8), who can’t even beat winless teams now, supposed to keep up to the high-scoring Chiefs (6-3)? It seems they’re playing for a top draft pick and probably a quarterback to replace veteran Eli Manning. Kansas City started the year 5-0 before losing three of four. This is the perfect remedy to their recent woes. The Chiefs are 6-3 ATS, while the Giants are 3-6.
VGB’s pick — Kansas City (-11), Under (45)
It’s Time To Take The Saints For Real
Washington at New Orleans — The Saints (7-2) eliminated all doubt that they are serious contenders this season when they destroyed the Bills 47-10 on the road last weekend in Buffalo. New Orleans, who has finished 7-9 the last three seasons, meets an NFC rival this weekend that is decimated by injuries in the Redskins (4-5). Drew Brees has been here before with New Orleans. The Saints have a leader — and running game — that can take them to the promised land.
VGB’s pick — New Orleans (-8), Over (51)
Rams Unbeaten On Road This Season
Los Angeles Rams at Minnesota — Two more divisional leaders clash in Minnesota this weekend. Who would have said before the season began that this would be a game of the week? The Rams (7-2) have won four straight and are undefeated on the road this season. The Vikings (7-2) have won five straight and have won four of five at home. Something has to give. The Rams have also won their last four against the spread.
VGB’s pick — Los Angeles Rams (+2), Under (46)
Little Separates Two Struggling Florida Teams
Tampa Bay at Miami — Ryan Fitzpatrick made his first start a winning one for the Bucs (3-6) last weekend. The victory also stopped a five-game losing streak. But the bad news: Tampa is winless on the road this season. The Dolphins (4-5) have their problems, too. They have the worst scoring offense in the NFL with just over 15 points a game. The Bucs are 2-6-1 ATS, while the Dolphins are 3-4-2.
VGB’s pick — Tampa Bay (Pick), Over (40.5)
Backups Not Getting It Done For These Teams
Arizona at Houston — It’s hard to find positives for either of these two teams. Both are missing their starting quarterbacks with injuries. The Texans (3-6) have not won in two starts without rookie Deshaun Watson. Tom Savage completes less than 50 per cent of his passes, and he throws just as many picks as he does touchdown passes. Drew Stanton isn’t much better for the Cardinals, and his status is questionable for Sunday’s game.
VGB’s pick — Arizona (+1), Over (38.5)
Winless Browns Could Make It An Imperfect 10
Jacksonville at Cleveland — What can be said about the Browns (0-9) that hasn’t been covered in other weeks? They’re terrible. The over/under on wins this season should be set at 1.5. And most would still take the under. This is an important game for the first-place Jaguars (6-3), who have won three in a row. They must not allow a promising season to be tripped up by a loss in Cleveland.
VGB’s pick — Jacksonville (-8), Over (37)
Bills Bench Starting QB, Rookie Gets The Call
Buffalo at Los Angeles Chargers — The Bills (5-4) went from an impressive record of 5-2 to losing two straight and benching their quarterback. Fifth-round draft pick Nathan Peterman will make his first career start against the Chargers (3-6). It’s rare that first-time starters perform at a high level in this league. Deshaun Watson is one of the few exceptions to the rule. L.A. is 1-3 at home, Buffalo is 1-3 on the road.
VGB’s pick — Los Angeles Chargers (-4), Under (44)
Patriots Unbeaten In Four Games On Road
New England at Oakland — The Raiders (4-5) began the season as one of the Super Bowl favorites. The Patriots (7-2) are the Super Bowl favorites. This is a road game for both teams, as they meet in Mexico City. New England is 4-0 on the road, the Raiders are 2-3. The Patriots have won five straight, with their last four by a touchdown or more. The Raiders are struggling to get back to .500.
VGB’s pick — New England (-7), Under (54)
Slumping Broncos Have Lost Five Straight
Cincinnati at Denver — These two AFC rivals have managed to win a total of six games this season. The Broncos (3-6) started off the season 3-1, and then lost to the lowly New York Giants. They haven’t won a game since. They’re also 0-5 ATS in that slide. The Bengals (3-6) are just 1-4 on the road and are headed for another disappointing season. They have lost three of their last four.
VGB’s pick — Denver (-2.5), Over (39)
Eagles Can Widen Division Lead To Four Games
Philadelphia at Dallas — The Eagles (8-1) can widen their lead to four games over the Cowboys (5-4) and all but clinch the division title with a win here in Dallas. They’ve had two weeks to prepare for their longtime rivals with a bye week. The Cowboys, playing without Ezekiel Elliott, were searching for answers in their 20-point loss to Atlanta. We find out Sunday night in prime time if they found any.
VGB’s pick — Philadelphia (-4), Over (48.5)
Playoff Contenders Both Need This One
Atlanta at Seattle — Finally, an impressive win for the Falcons (5-4) against a good team. The reigning NFC champions need to do a lot more of that if they hope to make the playoffs. The Seahawks (6-3) also need some consistency as they chase the division leaders from L.A. The Falcons have struggled to win on the road all season. And it won’t get any easier against the 12th Man in Seattle.
VGB’s pick — Seattle (-3), Over (45)
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